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The Dartmouth
June 23, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Executives ask Honovich to step down

At a meeting last night, eight of the 12 members of the Student Assembly's Executive Committee asked Secretary John Honovich '97 to resign -- calling his demeanor "reprehensible" -- but Honovich said he will not step down.

Both Honovich and the eight members who signed a letter calling for his resignation said they will try to cooperate and not allow the rift dividing the Assembly to widen.

The letter stated Honovich has acted to promote his own interests and has consistently caused "infighting, confrontation, unproductivity, a poor public image, and has run counter to the expectations of the student body we are expected to serve efficiently and honorably."

Among these, it said Honovich disrupted Assembly meetings and used his "powers and positions to promote what is thought by the below signed to be your own personal interests."

The signatories said Honovich consistently raised his voice at meetings and made jokes, sometimes of a mean-spirited nature, during General Assembly and Committee meetings.

Calling the letter "disgusting," Honovich said it was driven by "petty disagreements" between him and other members of the Executive Committee.

He said he will not resign since he has acted solely for the sake of students and "because everything that I've done has been to get students involved and it's never been to undermine this Assembly," he said.

The signatories said their action follows a term during which Honovich has impeded the Assembly's operation and is not related solely to last week's incident.

Last week Honovich sent a BlitzMail message with the names of members who voted to defeat a motion for a student-wide referendum on the proposed meal plan. In the message, Honovich also explained the reason for their vote, but the signatories said his explanation was deliberately distorted and inflammatory.

Executive Committee members President Danielle Moore '95, Vice President Rukmini Sichitiu '95, Grace Chionuma '96, Yun Chung '97, Brandon del Pozo '96, Carol Lee '97, Scott Rowekamp '97 and Tim Young '96 signed the letter.

Honovich said the letter's arguments have no real basis.

"All these claims are ... all very subtle and can easily be refuted," he said. "They know they don't have the votes to impeach me so all they can do is ask me to resign."

Moore, who last night announced her intention to resign as Assembly President, said she repeatedly tried to reason with Honovich.

"I think we've all tried to be as fair and open-minded with John as possible and I think these actions were not returned in kind," she said.

Del Pozo said Honovich's antics have stood in the Assembly's way since the beginning of the term, when Honovich challenged the several new appointments to the Assembly.

"Everything is a big stink and we have to react to that and that's not the way to run an assembly," del Pozo said.

In an interview last night with all the signatories but Young and Chionuma, the group said the motive of the letter was not political nor personal, but simply an inability to work with Honovich.

"It was my fear that this would be seen as a personal attack against John when I think so many people have been attacked by John," Moore said.

She said she met repeatedly with Honovich to get him to work more constructively with members of the Executive Committee.

"At first I asked it of him, later I demanded it of him and it never came to fruition," she said.

Moore, Sichitiu, Chung and Lee also said they felt Honovich had a problem dealing with the large number of women leaders on the Executive Committee.

"It doesn't matter what position that we hold, he disagrees with it," Sichitiu said.